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Blood. 2004 May 15;103(10):3662-8. Epub 2004 Jan 15.

Bcl-2 protein expression is the strongest independent prognostic factor of survival in primary cutaneous large B-cell lymphomas.

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  • 1Department of Dermatology, Hôpital Pasteur, Colmar Cedex, France.


Bcl-2 protein expression has been associated with poor prognosis in patients with noncutaneous diffuse large B-cell lymphomas. In primary cutaneous large B-cell lymphomas, the location on the leg, the round-cell morphology defined as the predominance of centroblasts and immunoblasts over large centrocytes, and multiple skin lesions were identified as adverse prognostic factors. The prognostic value of bcl-2 protein expression has not been studied in large series of patients. We evaluated 80 primary cutaneous large B-cell lymphomas collected by the French Study Group on Cutaneous Lymphomas. The prognostic value of age, sex, number of lesions, cutaneous extent, location, serum lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) level, B symptoms, morphology, and bcl-2 protein expression was studied. The overall 5-year specific survival rate was 65%. In univariate analysis, advanced age, multiple skin lesions (n = 48), location on the leg (n = 25), round-cell morphology (n = 32), and bcl-2 expression (n = 39) were significantly related to death from lymphoma. In multivariate analysis, bcl-2 expression (P =.0003), multiple skin lesions (P =.004), and age remained independent prognostic factors. The 5-year specific survival rates in bcl-2-positive and bcl-2-negative patients were 41% and 89%, respectively (P <.0001). A new prognostic classification of primary cutaneous B-cell lymphoma should be based primarily on bcl-2 protein expression rather than the location of skin lesions.

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